BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
The Department of Budget and Management has issued a memorandum stating that the P52 million development funds for 26 Negros Occidental barangays cleared of New People’s Army affectation is now available, Maj. Cenon Pancito III, spokesperson of the Army’s 3rd Infantry Division said yesterday.
As soon as they complied with the requirements, the DBM will download the funds, Pancito said.
Recipients of the development funds are 14 barangays of Escalante City, Alimango, Binagyuhan, Buenavista, Dian-ay, Japitan,Langub, Libertad, Mabini, Malasibog, Paitan, Pinapugasan, Rizal, Udtongan and Washington.
Other recipients were Brgy. San Pablo of Manapla, barangays of Bulwangan, Codcod, Guadalope, Nataban and Quezon in San Carlos City, Brgys. Estado and Gawahon in Victorias City, Brgy. Banago in Bacolod City, Brgy. Canlusong inEB Magalona, and Brgy Caduhaan in Cadiz City.
Pancito stressed that those barangays will not receive cash, but projects worth P20 million each.
Aside from Negros Occidental, two barangays in Antique, four in Capiz and 42 in Iloilo City and Iloilo province are also receiving P20M each in development funds, DBM record showed.
Pancito disclosed that a total of P1.4 billion worth of projects has been earmarked by DBM for 74 insurgency-cleared barangays in Western Visayas.
DBM has already issued Local Budget Circular 135, that will serve as the guidelines in releasing NTF-ELCAC’s Local Government Support to the Barangay Development Program (LGSF-SBDP).
Recipients can use the said funds for farm-to-market roads, school buildings, water and sanitation systems, rural electrification, housing; medical, burial, transportation, food, cash-for-work and educational assistance for indigent person or households.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, these barangays may also spend their respective budget allocations to build health stations or fund initiatives related to Covid-19 vaccinations, among others, the guidelines said.
Also included among the projects to be funded by the LGSF-SBDP are “reconstruction, rehabilitation, repair and other similar projects in connection with the occurrence of natural, or human-induced calamities, epidemics, crises resulting from armed conflicts, insurgency, terrorism and other catastrophes, it added.*